De Blasio Unveils New Electric Vehicle Fleet

Mayor Bill de Blasio continued his push for a cleaner New York this week with his announcement of the NYC Clean Fleet. Composed of 2,000 electric-powered vehicles, the fleet will move the city closer to the goals laid out in de Blasio's ambitious OneNYC Plan.

The fleet, used by local agencies such as the Transportation Department and Parks and Recreation department, will replace defunct sedans over the next decade. The municipality expects to replace half of all their non-emergency vehicles with the new, cleaner alternatives. As a result, it expects to decrease its emissions by nine percent with the move. De Blasio has pushed for an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2035.

In addition, the new fleet of electric vehicles will help the push for greater accessibility in New York City. As part of the investment package – between $50 and $80 million – the city will invest in more charging stations. A dearth of charging stations has long stood in the way of an electric vehicle breakthrough in NYC.

The plan is not without its faults, however. Due to current limits on electric technology, the city has deemed the new vehicles insufficient for emergency needs. Further, the municipality must find and reserve areas to place recharging stations, and reorganize shifts to allow for charging times. Typically, electric vehicles require recharging every 100 miles. Still, de Blasio remains adamant that, in the coming years, NYC will come to host the largest electric vehicle fleet in the country.

In addition, the city will replace a number of gasoline-powered vehicles with new, start-and-stop engine models.